Why Are Family Courts Biased Against Husbands and Fathers?

We should note first that not all courts/judges/judicial officers are against fathers.

Some courts/judges/judicial officers are against fathers (far too many), but not all of them.

Why are the judges who are biased against fathers biased? There are at least 4 reasons that I have observed while I have been a practicing divorce and family lawyer:

    • a belief that fathers aren’t nearly as important to children (especially young children) as are their mothers

o   a belief that dads care about children less than do mothers

o   a belief that dads are more inept caregivers than are mothers

o   a belief that “the only reason Dad wants joint custody is because it will reduce the amount of child support he’ll have to pay”

    • a belief (based upon the biases stated above) that reducing Dad to the status of a “visitor” in his children’s lives is OK because “it’s the quality of the time together, not the quantity”. It’s not true. Children whose fathers are marginalized naturally become emotionally detached from their fathers, they wonder “why doesn’t daddy want me?”, and the feel as though they did or failed to do something that has caused Dad to make himself scarce.
    • a belief that exercising joint physical custody of children causes more turmoil and conflict between Mom and Dad, with the children suffering as a result. It’s not true. Joint custody has been shown generally to reduce such conflict. And even when there is conflict between Mom and Dad, there are many kids who still don’t want that fact to result in a parent being prevented from spending as much time with them as possible.
    • a belief that joint custody requires that the children spend time much time “bouncing back and forth between their parents’ respective residences.” It’s not true. While it is possible to create a poorly devised joint custody plan with a lot of unnecessary back and forth, there are joint custody schedules that involve as many or fewer trips back and forth than a sole custody visitation or parent-time schedule.

Biases need busting, and you bust bias by standing up to judges who indulge biases and refuting those biases with courage, vigilance, facts, and sound reasoning.


Utah Family Law, LC | | 801-466-9277

(14) Eric Johnson’s answer to Why are family courts biased against husbands and fathers? – Quora

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